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On the blog today we would like to introduce certified breathwork teacher and energy healer, Ashley Neese. Ashley’s breathwork sessions, workshops, and lifestyle journal guide spirit seekers towards living with their hearts wide open. We are looking forward to hosting a full moon breathwork workshop on Wednesday, March 1, 2017. For more information or to purchase tickets please click here.
Would you mind describing breathwork to us for someone who knows nothing about it?
AN: Breathwork is a healing modality that uses the breath to improve mental, emotional, physical and spiritual well-being. There are many forms of breathwork and I teach a set of specific techniques that I have practiced and studied for many years. The beauty of breathwork is that a session can be tailored to the individual. I give my clients a set of practices depending on their constitution, needs and goals.
My breathwork sessions are an intuitive blend of breathing exercises, intuitive guidance and hands-on energy healing. During the session clients break through limiting beliefs, access their inner wisdom and accelerate their emotional and spiritual growth. At the end of the session we process a little and I give clients practices to support their continued growth.
Breathing is the most powerful healing technology and you can practice it anywhere. Breathing is something that is easy to take for granted because it’s automatic. It’s also easy to write off a breathwork practice and think, "That's too simple — it won't work for me." In reality, we hold energy in our bodies and breathwork is the quickest way to release that stuck energy which creates space for creativity, health, love.
Here are some of the benefits from breathwork sessions:
Clears stuck energy and limiting beliefs
Calms and grounds the nervous system
Upgrades emotional intelligence
Opens the heart for greater exchange with love
Balances chakras (energy centers)
Promotes relaxation and helps establish natural sleep patterns
Relieves anxiety, grief and stress
Supports addiction recovery
Of all your healing talents, which one is your favorite to practice and why?
AN: I love breathwork because changing the way you breathe is the fastest way to change how you feel. It is incredible to use breathwork in my healing sessions because it is accessible and works quickly. No matter what my clients come in with, they leave each session clear, grounded, open hearted and inspired to continue growing.
One-on-one work is incredibly powerful. Each time I meet with a client I am deeply grateful for their trust in me and their willingness to be vulnerable. What I observe consistently in my practice is that most of my clients are looking for a safe place to explore their emotions, clarity on their path and a trusted guide to hold space for their growth. I give them plenty of room to be totally vulnerable, without judgment. I feel deeply honored each time I hold space during a session and witness someone’s transformation.
You describe yourself as “a courageous guide who empowers women to heal themselves”. That’s amazing and beautiful. When you find yourself in need of empowerment yourself, who do you turn to?
AN: I am very grateful to have a community of family and friends who inspire me endlessly. When I need encouragement and support I reach out to them and they always show up.
What is your favorite virtue?
AN: I have so many favorites! At this moment I would have to say forgiveness.
Something that has been coming up for me a ton in my new relationship is the fear of being needy when I'm vulnerable. For most of my life I prided myself on not needing anything from anyone. I'm extremely self sufficient because I had to be growing up. Part of why I got so involved with drugs and alcohol at a young age was my desire to numb my feelings of needing love from people and not having tools for loving myself. I was waiting, hoping someone would love me, and by that I mean really see me.
The thing about needing to be seen, which I know deep down is a fundamental human need, not something unique to me, is that it requires a level of vulnerability that I am cycling through in a new way. And wow there is so much fear and pain and tenderness just under the surface. It's so raw, like the kind of rawness that brings your entire journey into focus in less than a second, the kind of rawness that sends a chill down your spine because you know without a doubt you have never been more honest and seen in that moment.
As I step into this new cycle of vulnerability I am leaning on a strong forgiveness practice. I am giving myself room to make mistakes and being extra gentle with myself during this growth process. Taking up more space, being seen, and speaking up through my fears in this relationship is very big work and forgiveness is making such a big difference in how I navigate this transition.
What would be your “perfect” day?
AN: Most days I wake up grateful to be alive and excited about what is ahead. An ideal day looks something like this:
Wake up, oil pull, meditate with my partner, write in my journal.
Drink a smoothie.
Meet my trainer for a boxing session in the part.
Enjoy a delicious breakfast of sprout fed eggs, cooked local greens and an herbal infusion.
Tend to emails.
See a client for a healing session.
Eat lunch, a giant salad with chicken and avocado.
See another client.
Work on my book.
Cook dinner for my partner and I.
Go for an evening stroll through the neighborhood.
Relax at home with our family.
Get to bed before 10pm.
What’s your favorite quality about yourself?
AN: Empathy. It took me years to understand that being empathetic is a gift. Now that I have tools for working with it.
What was your greatest failure and how did you overcome it?
AN: I don’t believe in failure because everything always leads to the next thing. I’ve been a creative my entire life. Following my intuition and taking risks with my practice and shown me time and time again that even when something doesn’t work out in a particular way it lights the path for the next step.
Someone might say that I failed in my art career because I am not creating art in the same way that I was seven years ago. The truth is, my practice evolved into what it is today and it’s actually an extension of the healing work I am doing right now. In other words, I wouldn’t be where I am with my healing career today without going through what I did as a working artist.
If you could speak to everyone in the world at the same time, what would you say?
I see you.
I hear you.
I feel you.
I love you.
Photography and video by: Marielle Chua.